At the 2009 Tokyo Game Show, Sega producer Toshihiro Nagoshi unveiled Yakuza 4 for the PlayStation 3, the latest in the developer's well-regarded Japanese gangster action adventure series. The news was bittersweet for many Western gamers, however, because while it confirmed that the Yakuza series would continue, Sega had still not localized Yakuza 3 for release outside of Japan.
Now, those holding out hope for Yakuza 3's release in the West are in luck. Sega confirmed today via Sony's PlayStation Blog that Yakuza 3 will arrive exclusively for the PS3 in North America, Europe, and Australia in March 2010.
Yakuza 3 is a direct sequel to the contemporary-set Yakuza 2, after the spin-off Ryu ga Gotoku: Kenzan took the franchise to Japan's Edo period in 2008. (Sega has yet to confirm Kenzan's release in the West.) Yakuza 3 picks back up with former gangster Kiryu Kazuma, who had abandoned Tokyo's underground to establish an orphanage in Okinawa at the end of the last game. Sega noted that Yakuza 3's Western release will maintain the original Japanese voice-over work with English subtitles, instead of the usual localized voice-over.
Check out GameSpot's preview of Yakuza 3 from last year's Tokyo Game Show for more information.